The “clunker” story by Fay Weilbaecher, from Covington:
“Many years ago, when I was 16, my future husband took me to the Blue Room at the Roosevelt Hotel to celebrate my birthday.
“He had just got his first car, the Beige Bazooka. If you’re over thirty, it will vibrate like a washing machine.
“We had a great night on his dad’s credit card.
‘We had parked in the garage opposite the hotel. We noticed how amazing the clothes were for the couples waiting with us for their cars – beautiful furs, evening dresses, and one man was in a tuxedo.
“While chatting with everyone, we noticed that the falling cars were Caddis, Porsches, limousines and convertibles.
Suddenly, there was a terrible roar and a beige bazooka came down the slope, trembling and counterproductive, with smoke coming out of the exhaust.
‘No one moved to claim it; not even us. We looked at each other, and when it came to us, we said, ‘Run!’ We went in. We let a group of 10 people suffocate and cough.
We laughed all the way home.
We have stories about fixing cars with matches, beer cans, and decorative pins. Ray Stirling, of Gonzales, offers this reformist tale:
“During the early 1970s I was in the US Army in Germany. I was driving an old Volkswagen when I stopped.
“A friend and I discovered that the dots do not open. We used a small stone we picked up from the road and put in the dispenser to keep it open.
“We’ve re-posted. You don’t remember removing it.”
Speaking of auto repairs, John De West of Prairieville provides an example of how poverty leads to ingenuity:
“I graduated from high school in 1961. I didn’t have much money, so I bought a 50 Ford V-8 flat-headed model for $100.
“That car was running like a grated dog. I would drive it everywhere.
“I couldn’t stand the antifreeze for it, the block froze and cracked, which is what this engine is known for.
“I would drive it and check the oil a lot. And when the oil level was up, I would crawl under the car, empty the water from the oil pan and be ready to go again.
“I did this for a number of years, then traded it in for a new model.”
When mice attack
Nancy C. van den Acker adds to our seminar on rodents:
“In high school, my roommate, an ecologist, had a tub of field mice.
“A black cat would visit us during cold weather and of course she was fascinated.
“The mice used to jump on top of the chicken wire to pull sunflower seeds through. Black put a claw on top for a better look. His toes looked—you guessed it.
“After being bitten twice, he lost interest.”
Eileen Turowsky Taylor, of Walker, says, “Reports of unusual pets reminded me:
“I grew up in Northeastern Illinois. My parents and uncles were golfing with the kids in the clouds. I collected many freshwater oysters from the lake track.
“My father allowed me to bring them home in a bucket. I was happy to show them to relatives and neighbors. Apparently one of them was envious, and carried clams, buckets and everything.”
Special people section.
– Reverend James O Evans, of Karenkro, celebrates his 97th birthday Thursday, January 27. He is a retired Methodist priest. He was a sergeant in World War II as a paratrooper in the 82nd Airborne Division.
Hewitt Gomez, of Lafayette, celebrated his 97th birthday on January 17, a World War II veteran.
Grandma’s name “Yaya” is mentioned in the column that mentions Christy Ricketts, Ponzalez, as “Momo” chosen by her grandson Remy:
“One day Remy, 4, was in his kindergarten talking to his best friend, Dylan. Remy was visiting us over the weekend.
“I can only see them on the field, contemplating the world around them.
“I wish I could tie my house to Momo,” says Remy.
Dylan replies, ‘Yes, that would be great.
Dylan again: What is a mother? “